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Offroading

  • Prevent rust on your off-road vehicle

    Sometimes keeping an off-road vehicle looking good is as important as maintaining a high level of performance. When you're constantly going mudding or tackling tough terrain, however, it can be difficult to keep your vehicle in prime condition. Consistent cleaning and frequent maintenance can go a long way toward making the exterior of a machine shine, but drivers often have to go the extra mile to prevent rust from building up on their rides. 

    How it happens
    At its core, rust is just the result of the chemical reaction between oxygen and water. This isn't a problem for many drivers, as the paint protects the metal frame of a vehicle, but over time scratches or nicks in an automobile may allow for rusting to occur. 

    As a result, the places most susceptible to rust are the ones where water may build up. This is traditionally restricted to spots like the inside of doors, which frequently have condensation settle on them, or the area behind the wheels on the bottom of the automobile, where slush and ice can accrue in the colder months. Motorists who participate in off-road driving may find that the bottom of their vehicle can become a target for rust, as it is usually skimming mud, creeks and other bodies of water for an extended period of time. 

    Preventing rust build up 
    The first step toward stopping rust build up before it starts is keeping your eyes peeled for scratches in a vehicle's paint. Touch-up paint can be used to patch these smaller issues, and it's a good idea to keep a bit of the paint on hand, especially if you're frequently off-roading and encounter rocks, gravel, debris and other obstacles that could harm the exterior of an automobile. 

    Even if you're watching out for cracks in the paint, rust could still be developing on the underside of a vehicle. Drivers who are dedicated to their rides may want to have an undercoat applied to the bottom. Yahoo reported that these rubberized coatings can seal the area against corrosion. If rust has already started forming, this step won't do much good, but it could help extend the life and enhance the look of newer vehicles. 

    No matter what the age of your automobile, you should be consistently washing and waxing it. Most of the area that you will be caring for will already be covered with paint, and thus less likely to begin rusting, but getting into the pattern of cleaning the truck or Jeep after off-road adventures can help avoid problems. During this process, be sure to open all doors, the hood and the trunk of the vehicle to check for hidden problem spots. At this time you can check the undercarriage and draining spots to make sure there are no budding issues that are breeding rust. 

    Watch out for winter
    Rust can be particularly harmful in the winter, when a vehicle comes into contact with massive amounts of salt placed on the roads to increase traction. The salt speeds up the rusting process, so it is important to pay attention to rust prevention as a regular part of vehicle maintenance. 

    You should be cleaning a vehicle somewhat frequently throughout the winter season. Ridding a vehicle of salt that would otherwise sit on the exterior is incredibly important - especially if you are not off-roading as often as the rest of the year. Long breaks between drives can leave plenty of time for rust to wreak havoc on a vehicle and could cause preventable damage. 

  • Mud bogging takes center stage in Florida

    It takes a special kind of off-road driver to enjoy mud bogging. The risk involved with each trek through the deep mud, the thrill that comes from successfully navigating a treacherous landscape and the skill required to outfit a vehicle with all of the necessary truck mods to conquer the terrain are all qualities that make mudding an attractive pastime for motorists to work up to. 

    Mudding differs from more standard off-road driving because those who take part in the pastime rely, at least in part, on Mother Nature. It's hard to go mud bogging without mud, and that means you need to be able to access waterways or be in a location that has frequent rainfall. 

    The perfect climate
    If there's one thing that makes Florida stand out from other off-roading locations, it's the climate. The state is well known for having warm and sunny weather year-round, but what often gets lost in the shuffle is the fact that it has frequent rain showers as well. Summer storms are a regular occurrence, and the state is also home to countless lakes and ponds throughout its central region. This diverse landscape helps to create a top-notch setting for off-roading, and the consistent rains ensure that mud is almost always plentiful. 

    High humidity helps to keep the land damp throughout the day, but it can also make for an uncomfortable setting. If you aren't used to the heavy heat or simply want to make sure your vehicle is armed with the right extras to keep you comfortable, be sure to give your ride a tune up before departing and finishing any last-minute truck mods you had planned. 

    Make the trip
    Fans of mudding know there are some spots that should not be missed when it comes to experiencing off-road driving in new locations. Florida is certainly one of these locations, as the ideal climate and wide array of potential driving locales makes it a can't-miss destination. 

    Before heading south, you should examine your off-road vehicle to make sure it has all of the modifications needed to succeed in Florida's mud. The right tires are must-haves for the difficult muddy landscape, and often that requires installing a lift kit to provide enough room and clearance on a vehicle. Some locations also require a safety flag to be included on all automobiles, from full-size trucks to ATVs, so drivers may want to pick one of these up beforehand and figure out the best place to include it on the vehicle. 

    Locations to check out
    Florida is a big state, and even excluding major cities and protected areas, there is plenty of room to roam. One place that attracts many drivers is Horse Hole Creek. Located west of Ocala, Fla., this mudding spot features an impressive course and is a favorite of local drivers. The area hosts a number of competitive events throughout the year, but it is also open to the public, and drivers can purchase a weekend pass to explore the land on their own. 

    Another alluring location is Coyote Mud Bog. This off-road park hosts special events throughout the year and is frequently used as a campground for drivers who want to pack a lot of fun into their visit. Miles of off-road trails and a 400 by 600-foot mud pit for general mud bogging and official events are open to the public, making this area an all-in-one stop for recreational drivers. Coyota Mud Bog is open every weekend, from Friday at 9 a.m. to Sunday at 6 p.m., and it is an ideal weekend getaway for fans of off-roading. 

  • Beware of the dangers of carbon monoxide when off-roading

    There are a few potential dangers that most people watch out for when off-roading. Things like vehicle safety, obstacles on the trails and similar mechanical problems are common issues that drivers usually know to pay attention to. However, other sources of harm are not given the same focus, and this could be to the detriment of motorists everywhere. 

    Carbon monoxide poisoning has been a problem for people all across the world, and it can strike in any situation, whether you are off-roading or simply sleeping. While devices like carbon monoxide detectors can help in the home setting, you may have to go the extra mile to protect yourself from harm when in an automobile. 

    The dangers of carbon monoxide
    Carbon monoxide is a gas that can cause major damage to unsuspecting individuals. In areas where there is a high content of the compound in the air, red blood cells in the body absorb the gas instead of oxygen. As a result, necessary oxygen is not distributed to organs, wreaking havoc on basic functions. Additionally, too much carbon monoxide can damage tissues, which further intensifies the damage. 

    Part of the reason carbon monoxide is so dangerous is because it is an odorless, colorless gas - making it extremely hard to recognize until you have already been exposed. That is part of the reason drivers must always be conscious of where they are off-roading and how the terrain may be affecting the automobile.

    The gas can build up even in semi-enclosed spaces that individuals may have believed were safe. Because you can never be too careful about the ventilation, it is best to keep windows open whenever possible and to take regular breaks where you can relax in the fresh air away from a vehicle. 

    How to avoid harm
    Many issues arising from carbon monoxide poisoning in off-road driving come when the exhaust of a vehicle is blocked by mud or other debris. After mudding, be sure to take a short break just to check the exhaust. Similarly, if you are crossing a muddy area or waterway and find yourself stuck, open the windows and periodically check on the back of the vehicle. Should the exhaust become blocked, it could back up into the passenger compartment completely unbeknownst to you, which may lead to dangerous situations, so take breaks out in the fresh air and encourage passengers to do the same. 

    Carbon monoxide can also be found in small gasoline stoves or lanterns. If you wind up camping during your off-roading adventure, be sure to check and see if your gear produces carbon monoxide and take steps to ensure these devices are used in open spaces where you won't be breathing in the gas. 

    When working on truck or Jeep modifications, be sure not to restrict yourself to a closed garage or poorly ventilated space. If the car is running at any point, it is releasing carbon monoxide into the air and putting you at risk. 

    Know the symptoms
    One of the best ways to stay safe when off-road driving is by knowing the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning and being able to identify potentially harmful situations. Some of the most common symptoms include headache, nausea, dizziness and general weakness. 

    These signs of carbon monoxide poisoning can occasionally seem like other sicknesses, so it's important to have the notion in the back of your mind to avoid further harm. If you or a passenger starts experiencing any of these symptoms, do yourself a favor and stop driving. Pulling over the side of the trail, opening windows and getting out of the car could go a long way to feeling better. At this time you can also check out the exhaust on your off-road vehicle and see if there are any noticeable issues. 

  • What to do before you go off-roading

    Most drivers have a firm grasp on what needs to be done before venturing out for an off-roading experience. Whether it's your first time out on the trails or you're a seasoned expert, you still have to go through the motions of preparing for off-road driving. Even off-road experts may occasionally need to be reminded of the things you should be checking off a to-do list before heading out for an adventure. 

    Get a permit
    Before you can hit the trails and start taming the landscape, you have to make sure you have taken care of all of the truck mods and paperwork required to handle the dirt roads. First, you'll need to verify that your vehicle - and all of its truck modifications - is legal for both street use and off-roading. Once that has been taken care of, reach out to the location you plan on exploring to see if the property requires individual driver permits and find out how to get those if necessary. 

    Check the weather
    There are a variety of reasons you should be checking the weather forecast before you jump in your off-road vehicle, and it goes beyond deciding what to wear. Knowing the climate can help you equip yourself with the right tools that could come in handy in any situation. 

    The predicted weather should influence what kinds of tools you bring along. For example, if snow is on the horizon, you may want to pack up a winch, while drivers who are going mud bogging should bring along recovery straps in case they find themselves mired in the soft ground during their ride.

    "A change in a set of one tires to another set of tires can make it handle completely different," Chad Schroll, an expert from a company that makes winches, told KCBY News. "In snow, in particular, I end up using a winch way more because the snow consistency can change so much - from the dry, powdery snow that you can drive through easily to the wet, heavy snow." 

    Snow may be the farthest thing from your mind at the moment, but the point still stands: Knowing what to expect weather-wise is an important part of off-roading, and making the right preparations could save you some frustration in the long run. 

    Scout the area
    If you're planning on off-roading in a location you haven't explored or don't know that much about, you should scout the area ahead of time. This could be as simple as checking in with a governing body or ranger station to see what kinds of regulations are in place on the grounds, ensuring that you can comply with all restrictions. At this time you should also ask about especially difficult areas or common problems off-road drivers frequently encounter. This can clue you in as to what situations you should expect and what equipment you may want to bring along. 

    "The most important thing is knowing how your vehicle is going to behave in the different situations," winch manufacturer Andy Lilienthal told the news source. "Much like any other adventure sport - like skiing or rock climbing or anything like that - you've got to be sure that you know your limits. And you really have to know what you're doing or you need to go with people that can teach you." 

    These are just three of the steps you should be taking before you start dune bashing, mudding or any engaging in any other off-road activity. Once these basic tasks are complete, you can turn your attention to truck mods and improvements you'll need to handle whatever comes your way. 

  • Watch out for heat damage to a vehicle this summer

    We're smack dab in the middle of summer, and while that may mean trips to the beach for some, almost everyone has to deal with scorching temperatures. Although the heat can help to create a good environment for off-roading adventures, it can also cause damage to a vehicle if you're not careful. 

    "Prolonged exposure to high temperatures is not only a threat to passengers, but a vehicle concern as well," said John Nielsen, managing director of Automotive Engineering and Repair for AAA. "Knowing the dangers and preparing your vehicle for extreme heat can keep your vehicle running smoothly during the hot summer months." 

    Dangers of heat damage 
    One of the major areas of concern when it comes to heat damage is the engine. Over-heating is a real threat, as excessive heat and humidity can cause different parts of an engine to expand or put additional strain on the motor. It's not uncommon to see drivers pulled over on the side of the road in the heart of summer, waiting for their engines to cool down, but you should pay attention to how you're pushing a vehicle to ensure you are never in that position. 

    If you're ever participating in some off-road driving and hear a peculiar sound like bubbling or gurgling, pull over and shut the engine off immediately. These sounds can signify a motor that is much too hot, and driving on this motor can destroy an engine beyond repair. Allow the machinery under the hood to rest once you pull over - the radiator cap and other gear will likely be too hot to touch, and the interior fluid could have been transformed to dangerous steam in the heat. 

    You also need to keep an eye on the vehicle's battery. Heat can cause a lot of damage to the electrical core of a vehicle, and although there isn't much you can do to control temperatures, you can make sure other areas of the battery's maintenance are up to date to prevent factors from accumulating. Double check the battery to ensure it's mounted properly to reduce vibrations and test it to see what its life expectancy is. Heat can speed up the decline of a battery, so if you have one that is near the end of its life span you may want to keep a spare nearby. 

    Tires are another part of a vehicle that could be affected by the oppressive heat. High temperatures can lead to under-inflated tires, so be sure you're checking the pressure throughout the season and comparing it to what the vehicle manufacturer recommends. 

    How to prevent problems
    Despite the potential for mechanical issues that come about when temperatures rise, there are many steps drivers can take to protect themselves and their off-road vehicles from harm. One of the easiest and most basic things you can do is consistently monitor coolant levels and replace the fluids when needed. Refresh these liquids and flush out the engine system periodically to ensure your vehicle is clean and efficient. 

    Last, but certainly not least, you should keep an eye on your air conditioning system. Even if you're not the type of driver who consistently uses the tool, it's important to periodically check on the HVAC system to make sure everything is working properly. Not only can a poorly functioning service be indicative of other problems under the hood, but you never know when an emergency will strike and you will need the amenity. Going off-road driving in the summer and getting stuck could leave you at the mercy of nature, and having the ability to take a break inside an air conditioned cabin could be just what you need. 

  • Finding the best off-road trails

    Unless you own a large tract of land, you'll need to find trails to take your Jeep or other truck off-roading. If you're a seasoned off-road driver, you probably know all the best spots already, but those who are new to the sport will have to do a bit of research to track down the best trails in their area. Here are a few tips for finding the best trails to take your vehicle with all of its truck modifications out for a spin in the wilderness:

    Pay attention during everyday driving
    When you're shuttling the kids to school or commuting to work, keep your eyes peeled if you live in a more suburban or rural area. There may be trails that you've simply never seen before right around the corner. You can try taking different roads than you usually travel, as this could expose you to new areas and lead you to a diamond in the rough. When you find one, make sure your off-road vehicle is ready for action and head out for a fun adventure.

    Ask your friends
    If any of your friends or family members love off-road driving as well, they might have an inside scoop on a hot trail that you're sure to love. The benefits of getting references from people you know are two-fold. First, they have at least somewhat of an idea of the experience you're looking for when you get behind the wheel, so they won't bother telling you about a mud bogging spot that you wouldn't enjoy. Second, since you know them, you don't have to think twice about their opinion. If a friend tells you he or she experienced a lot of problems with a certain off-roading locale, it's more likely a genuine sentiment.

    Go online
    There are countless resources for off-roading enthusiasts trying to find trails. You can check out forums dedicated to the sport, which will allow you to browse through other users' questions and answers as well as posting your own to get specific feedback. The National Park Service website is another valuable resource, as it can provide information about whether or not certain parks allow recreational vehicles to leave the roads. The same holds true for state parks and other wilderness areas. It's always best to make sure that off-roading is OK before hitting the trails to avoid problems.

  • Colorado beckons off-road drivers

    Few places in the world can please as many visitors as Colorado can. The Centennial State is home to big cities, quiet mountain towns and plenty of parks that protect the Rocky Mountain environment. It's in these quieter spots off-roading enthusiasts can find some of the best driving trails in the U.S., making the state a can't-miss destination for drivers hoping to traverse the most amazing routes in the country. 

    Why Colorado? 
    Colorado has its own off-roading motto: "Stay the Trail." Although some drivers may feel the urge to head deep into the unknown wilderness during their adventures across the state, there's no need - the trails winding throughout Colorado provide plenty of challenges and rewarding experiences for those who manage to cross them. 

    Those who plan on participating in off-road driving in Colorado should be aware of a few rules the state has in place to regulate the experience. There is a noise limit which may impact power output, but otherwise most of the regulations revolve around keeping off-road vehicles on designated trails and not harming the vegetation that surrounds the worn-down paths. 

    While you can find excellent off-road driving locations throughout the state, there are a few trails that continue to receive praise from those who have experience them. 

    The Silverton Trails
    Many of Colorado's off-roading trails stretch back to the days when mining in the Rocky Mountains was a common sight. These routes, once filled with workers and machinery, are now dedicated to trucks and Jeeps that make the journey to the land. Hundreds of miles of these trails are set among the San Juan Mountains, a section of the Rockies set in the southwest corner of Colorado. 

    According to Off-road.com, Silverton, which was once a mining town, is a great place to set up a base camp. From there, you can choose to test your truck modifications on any number of trails that surround the area. Paths like the Engineer Pass and Alpine Loop are favorites of visitors and locals alike, as they take drivers through some of the most scenic areas of Colorado while still offering plenty of challenges for those who like dune bashing. At some points in these trails you will hit elevations of more than 12,000 feet above sea level and be forced to use all of your knowledge to handle steep hills, rocky sections and rushing waterways that are found in the dozens of miles of trails. 

    Metberry Gulch
    If you enjoy pushing your off-road vehicle over tough rock passes, then the Metberry Gulch route might be for you. Located in central Colorado, this trail is about 4.5 miles long and transitions between fairly easy sections that anyone can drive to more difficult areas. As you progress through the path, you'll encounter sharp turns, steep hills and plenty of awesome scenery. The one section that usually proves to be the most challenging is what is known as the Rock Slab, a steep, flat rock that requires vehicles to find the perfect speed if drivers don't want to slide while crossing it. 

    At the end of the Metberry Gulch route lies the South Platte River. This doesn't have to be the end of your journey, however, as the nearby trails of Hackett Gulch and Longwater Gulch can be easily accessed to extend the experience. Much like the area surrounding the Silverton Trails, the land around Metberry Gulch and its neighboring trails is filled with wild animals, lush vegetation and towering mountains that make for a unique off-roading environment.

  • Land Rover launches Expedition America

    Have you ever wanted to hop behind the wheel and set out on an exploration of the U.S.? You aren't alone. Many eager travelers, whether they are off-road driving experts or just curious minds, venture out onto American roads to try and see as much of the country as possible. That's the general idea behind the Land Rover Expedition America - with one major twist. Instead of seeing the nation on paved roads, drivers participating in the event are getting a chance to off-road through the U.S. as part of an official Land Rover effort. 

    Land Rover Expedition America
    Land Rover Expedition America aims to do something that hasn't been done before: conduct an off-road driving experience from one coast of the U.S. to the other. 

    The Expedition began Friday, July 27, when the pack of drivers departed from a Land Rover Experience Center in Asheville, N.C. For the next several weeks, the pack of three SUVs will traverse dirt and gravel trails, as well as mountains, rock-laden routes and other hazardous areas. While a few short stretches of tarmac are unavoidable, the bulk of this trip is set in the wilderness and will require every ounce of power and effort from the Land Rover machines. 

    Expert off-road driver Tom Collins is leading the charge, and this isn't the first time Collins and Land Rover have teamed up to show off their prowess. After he competed in the 1987 Camel Trophy competition, which consisted of driving through the terrain of Madagascar in a Land Rover, Collins also participated in 1989's Great Divide Expedition through Colorado and organized a number of driving schools across the country. With so much off-roading experience, particularly behind the wheel of a Land Rover, he is the perfect choice to lead this trek. 

    Collins and the rest of the drivers are not expected to reach their destination - the Pacific coast in southwest Oregon - for another month. 

    The Trans-America Trail
    The Trans-America Trail is the brainchild of avid motorcyclist Sam Correro. Correro spent years nourishing his passion for off-roading before eventually setting his mind to traveling from coast to coast on the back of his trusty dirt bike. This idea required quite a bit of effort, however, as no one had mapped out a route that could bring an off-road enthusiast from one end of the country to the other. So, in the late 1980s and early 1990s, Correro decided to do just that. The end result was a meticulously tracked route stretching 5,000 miles through 10 states - the Trans-America Trail. 

    Most of the Trans-America Trail is dirt and gravel tracks, and the Land Rovers heading out on the expedition will have to deal with obstacles and potentially treacherous environments as they navigate these routes. There are also several complicated mountain passes along the way. A mountain range in Colorado and Oregon, as well as multiple peaks in Utah, will certainly pose a major challenge, but perhaps the most difficult area lies in Nevada. 

    This route was originally intended to be just for motorcycles, and it remains to be seen how much success larger off-road vehicles like these Land Rover SUVs will find. When the fleet safely reaches its destination, however, it will prove that the 2013 Land Rover LR4 has what it takes to succeed in the world of off-roading. After successfully navigating mud, mountains, dirt, sand, rocks and anything else it encounters in the wilderness, this off-road vehicle could become one of the coolest options for avid explorers. 

  • New list highlights the best off-road vehicles of the year

    It's never easy to try and sift through all of the available information regarding potential vehicles. With so many statistics, reviews and other write-ups out there for the public, drivers have a lot to consider when they're looking at off-road options. In some instances, you've got to turn to other sources for input, which is why lists like "The Top 10 4x4 Off-Road Trucks This Year," released by autoMedia.com, can be so helpful.

    This ranking looked at some of the best trucks and SUVs for off-road driving introduced this year. The list contains some vehicles that are traditional choices for off-roading, as well as some other options you may not have previously considered.

    "Off-road vehicles are no longer minimalist cars that have few creature comforts and are difficult to drive in everyday situations, and this new list reflects that," said Doug Hamlin, founder of autoMedia.com. "Buyers can find a wide variety of brand new trucks and SUVs in any price range, and select the one that fits their budget and sense of adventure." 

    Here are a few of the selections that autoMedia.com singled out as being among the best options of the year so far:

    2013 Ram 1500
    It's no surprise to see the Ram 1500 on this list. Through the first several months of 2013, the pickup has racked up tons of awards and accolades, including many that have cited it as being one of the best - if not the best - options of any automobile on the market. One of the calling cards of this model is its frame, which is rugged and capable of handling whatever obstacles you throw at it. An adjustable air suspension can be easily modified with a Dodge lift kit, and the impressive 407 foot-pounds of torque is standing by to get you through any kind of tough situation.

    2013 Honda Ridgeline
    There are some instances where fans of off-roading have to toe the line between heavy-duty vehicles and family-friendly options that can meet a variety of needs. Although it's not usually considered to be an off-road staple, the 2013 Honda Ridgeline has enough amenities to keep fans of off-roading happy while also serving as an everyday car. It's got plenty of cargo space for gear and supplies, as well as above-average steering and all-wheel drive. 

    2013 Jeep Wrangler
    No list of the best off-road vehicles would be complete without the presence of the Jeep Wrangler. As with its predecessors, this Wrangler was practically born to conquer tough terrain. Valuing function over flair, the ride is ready to hit the trails with or without Jeep modifications, and making even a few small changes to the ride can turn it into the off-road vehicle of your dreams. Tires perfect for mud bogging and hardcore rock rails are just two of the many included features that can enhance your time on the trails. 

    2014 Toyota Tundra TRD
    As one of the newest inclusions on the list, the 2014 Toyota Tundra TRD still has a lot to prove - but it seems more than up to the task. The TRD package is designed to offer some of the most popular off-road amenities, bringing drivers tools like Bilstein shocks. Special touches to the exterior aim to reduce drag and improve aerodynamics, while also making for a more stable driving experience - no matter what the environment. This Toyota is still in the process of being rolled out to dealerships around the U.S., but it is definitely one to keep an eye on as the year goes by. 

  • Jeepers Jamboree brings off-roaders together

    Few vehicles capture the off-roading lifestyle quite like a Jeep. Whether you're behind the wheel of a Wrangler, a Cherokee or anything in between, you can take advantage of all of the Jeep modifications you've made to an off-road vehicle to explore an off-road trail that is both challenging and rewarding. Of course, these adventures are occasionally more fun when you're not alone, which makes some gatherings, such as the Jeepers Jamboree, alluring for many drivers. 

    Jeepers Jamboree
    For more than 60 years, campers and off-roading enthusiasts have been flocking to the western U.S. to participate in the annual Jeepers Jamboree. As one of the oldest and most popular treks in the country, the Jamboree takes up to 500 Jeeps and other automobiles across the Rubicon Trail in California. 

    Over the years, more than 35,000 off-road vehicles and 102,000 drivers and passengers have participated in the Jamboree. Everyone who takes part in the event has to be ready to handle anything, as the trip features late nights, loud music and a festive environment. Trail guides are stationed along the way to make sure all drivers stay safe and to provide guidance when it's needed, allowing anyone from beginners to expert off-roaders to join the Jamboree. 

    Drivers can choose from three- or four-day runs of the Jeepers Jamboree. A Vendor Show is on site to highlight some of the coolest accessories for all vehicles, but only a few models are allowed to participate in the trek. Jeeps, Land Cruisers, Toyota pickup trucks and a handful of other select automobiles are permitted, while others must be approved prior to the trip to ensure they won't harm the wilderness. 

    The Rubicon Trail
    The undisputed star of the Jeepers Jamboree is the setting. Known as the Rubicon Trail, this off-roading route stretches 22 miles from its starting point in Georgetown, Calif., to Lake Tahoe. While the bulk of the trip is challenging - requiring a lot of focus and driving skills to complete - the end destination boasts a calmer setting that's great for relaxation. 

    One of the aspects of the trail that makes it attractive for some off-road driving enthusiasts is the fact that it's always changing. Harsh winter storms regularly alter the route, adding obstacles to an area and making it a new experience for drivers every time they hit the dirt. These unknown elements mean that it takes quite a while to get through the path, with most of the vehicles moving along at 3 to 5 miles per hour. On the bright side, this leaves you with plenty of time to appreciate the spectacular surrounding landscape. 

    "The Rubicon Trail is the mecca of trails for the Jeep world and a perfect spot to get away from everything," Jamey Paine, a manager at an off-roading supplier, told the Tahoe Daily Tribune. "You spend your whole day wheeling on this scenic trail. It's indescribable." 

    A number of gatherings use the Rubicon Trail. In addition to the Jeepers Jamboree, there is the annual Jeep Jamboree, which welcomes a maximum of 200 vehicles, as well as the Toyota Land Cruiser Association's Rubithon and the Marlin Crawler Round-Up, each of which hosts 150 to 200 off-road vehicles. 

    No matter what brings you to the Rubicon Trail, you can enjoy traversing the miles while pushing your vehicle to the limit. As long as you have the proper tools and knowledge, as well as a will to complete the route, you can enjoy all aspects of the Rubicon Trail and the Jeepers Jamboree. 

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